A bunch of you have emailed me over the last 2-3 months asking how to grow your site as fast as humanly possible. I’m sorry I wasn’t able to give you a super fast solution – growing a site takes time. But here is how I accelerated Budgeting in the Fun Stuff’s growth spurt and my suggestions for newbie bloggers…
To-Do List for Growing a Blog
1. Guest Post!!! If your guest posts kick butt, you will draw in readers. Plus you’ll grow your reputation with other bloggers AND get more links out there to your site for the search engines to find. Win-Win-Win!!!
2. Comment. You will get a ton of new readers from comments that you leave elsewhere if they are well thought out. It shows that you want to be part of the community.
3. Post regularly. Blogs grow faster when there is material flowing. I’d suggest a minimum of three times a week for fast growth – I post daily at Budgeting in the Fun Stuff and used to post about once a week at How I Make Money Blogging. BFS grew way faster.
4. Submit to blog carnivals. Blog carnivals are basically just lists of good posts that are hosted on a different site each week or month depending on the carnival. You can find lists of carnivals that are available by using any search engine and a few minutes per submission. I actually outsource the submission process since it’s like $20 a month and saves me a ton of time. Just email me if you’d like me to connect you to my guy.
5. Join a forum. You can search for forums in your niche simply by typing your main keyword followed by “forum”. For example, you may enter “dog training forum” if your blog is about training your dog. If you’ve ever attended or are planning to attend the Financial Blogger Conference, you should check out their new forum at http://forum.finconexpo.com/.
6. Don’t be in this for the money. It’s a downer to only make 40 cents in the first couple of months. Have fun with it. If you are having fun, your readers have more fun. I look at my blogs as a solid community and the money-making as a huge bonus. I blog full time, but I always keep in mind that having my own online community to hang out with is my primary motivation to do what I do.
7. Read the very first posts on the most successful blogs in your niche. I attacked the archives of a bunch of highly successful personal finance blogs before I started just so I’d have an idea of what helped them to succeed.
8. Start a subscriber list. Whether you want to build a following to eventually suggest products, make affiliate sales, or you just want to build the largest community possible, you will want a subscriber list. I waited nearly 18 months before asking for anybody interested in extra info about me to sign up for my newsletter. That is a full 18 months that I lost out on an additional method of securing long-term readers. First, you should start with a free list setup somewhere. For example, I currently use MailChimp. Then, as your list grows, you should look into paid options like Aweber so that you can better manage your subscribers.
9. If your blog is very localized, you can search online for companies that may be able to get your name out to the locals directly. For example, you could use a place like the Local Direct Network if you were in Australia to send out local marketing. You can find something like that in pretty much any country.
Within four months of starting BFS, I had solid blog rankings, closed my first six-month ad deal for $450, and I’d scored my first-ever staff-writing gig. These tips absolutely worked for me.
Did I miss anything?